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Family Converts Dated Chantilly Rambler Into Modern Home for Entertaining

Home features pool, waterfall, Jacuzzi, fire pit and outdoor sauna.

Five years ago, when Nina walked into the 1970 rambler at 26857 Gum Spring Road, she was not impressed by the 3-inch, white shag carpeting covering much of the two-level home’s main floor. Nor was she attracted to the dark wood paneling that was in every room.

“But I liked the house,” said Nina, who is now semi-retired. “I liked the open floor plan and the large windows. It’s a solid house, and I had a vision.”

Nina and her husband, Peter, a construction business owner, bought the 4,272 square-foot home on 4.2 acres of land — including a pool — from the original owner. “The house was built by the former owner’s father-in-law as a wedding gift,” Nina explained. “It needed a lot of updates, and we knew we would start making changes immediately.”

Making Changes

One of the first changes was to remove the wood paneling and to install drywall in all of the rooms. “The kitchen has a lot of windows, so we painted the walls a nice green to compliment the green from the outside views,” Nina said, noting that the kitchen had been updated with granite countertops and modern appliances before they bought it. The couple also covered the cracked, white ceramic kitchen floors with a maple-toned vinyl. “We have three large dogs and that flooring worked much better for them,” Nina noted.

On the main level, the couple replaced the shag carpeting with hardwood floors. Downstairs, they installed Italian ceramic flooring. They also tore out all of the plain and brittle interior wood doors and replaced them with new ones that feature paneling and nickel, lever-style door handles.

The couple also reconfigured one of the home’s original five bedrooms. (The house originally had a master suite plus two guest rooms on the main level and two guest bedrooms in the lower level.) They took down the walls of one of the guest bedrooms adjoining the master, and converted the guest bedroom into a master suite sitting room.

Nina and Peter used wrought iron for a front gate to the property; they also fenced the entire grounds. They carried the wrought iron features into the interior of the house by replacing the wood stair railings to the lower level with an art-deco style iron railing that features gold painted leaves and flowers. They also used decorative iron on the double-door entry.

Made for Entertaining

Outside, Nina and Peter made even more changes, in part to accommodate their desire to use the home for entertaining. The original pool, which was a square, was redone to become a 25-foot by 50-foot rectangular pool with a waterfall. A solar-heated outdoor shower was installed near the pool.

The couple also had the patio around the pool redone with stone to include a semi-circular seating area surrounding a fire pit. They added a separate building to house a three-person sauna plus a dressing room and storage area.

Also on the patio, they added an eight-person Jacuzzi hot tub topped with a cabana-style patio cover. “When I bought the structure over the Jacuzzi it was just four columns. Then I went to Home Depot and bought lattice and other [materials] to cover it,” Nina said. “I put it up myself. I’m a do-it-yourselfer.”

Both levels of the four-bedroom, three-bath home feature large windows and sliding glass doors that lead to a deck with retractable awnings on the main level, and to the covered patio on the lower level. With surround-sound speakers both inside and out, and a large recreation room with wet bar on the lower level, the home is built for parties. “I love this house because of the entertainment value,” Nina said. She and Peter have hosted more than 100 guests for catered parties.

“The house is comfortable, cozy, convenient, and lots of fun,” said Nina. “It also has given us tranquility and peace of mind.”

However, she and Peter have decided to sell the home. They plan to relocate to a place with more acreage in order to better accommodate their dogs and to allow room for Nina to build a greenhouse.  The house is now for sale for $830,000 through Matt Shumate of RE/MAX Gateway-Chantilly

“I love the place completely,” Nina said. “I’d like to see a couple who likes to entertain enjoy this house.”

Ron Furgerson October 16, 2012 at 02:03 PM
What a beautiful home. Well done.
Mary Ann Barton (Editor) October 17, 2012 at 01:05 AM
I agree Ron! If anyone else knows of a home with an interesting story please e-mail me: maryann.barton@patch.com Thanks!
Christopher November 14, 2012 at 07:49 AM
This is a lovely family home. The walls are beautifully painted with tones that complement the interior of the individual room. Every room is perfectly lighted, with enough sunlight streaming in from wide, open windows or glass sliding doors. Although the family renovated the room with entertainment as their end goal, I can visually see this as a happy home to raise your kids in. - http://www.stoett.com

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